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Palanpur drug planting: Why is dismissed IPS officer Sanjiv Bhatt being probed

By Vicky Nanjappa
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    Ahmedabad, Sep 5: The Gujarat police have detained dismissed IPS officer, Sanjiv Bhatt in connection with the Palanpur drug planting case. The probe by the Gujarat CID got underway following an order the High Court. Bhatt and seven others are currently being questioned by officers of the CID.

    Sanjiv Bhatt

    The action comes in the wake of the Gujarat High Court directing the CID-Crime to probe the FIR lodged at Palanpur in Banaskantha in 1996 in which a lawyer from Rajasthan was booked for allegedly carrying 1.5 kg of narcotics. The case also involves a former judge of the Gujarat High Court, Ramanlal Rajmal Jain, and then Superintendent of Police Sanjiv Bhatt.

    The court was hearing petitions seeking a probe into the case. The High court ordered that the probe into the case should be conducted by the CID-Crime. Further the court ordered that the probe be completed in three months. The order was passed in June 2018.

    In 1996, 1.5 kg of narcotics was recovered from a room of Lajwanti City Hotel in Palanpur and police arrested a lawyer, Sumer Singh Rajpurohit, claiming that he was in the possession of narcotics.

    Later the police found that Rajpurohit had been abducted from his home in Pali, Rajasthan and the drugs were allegedly planted by the Palanpur police. The police allegedly did so for vacating the property occupied by Rajpurohit, which belonged to a relative of Jain, who was then a judge in the Gujarat High Court.

    Rajpurohit was allegedly forced to vacate the property, while he was in police custody at Palanpur. It was also alleged that Bhatt had played a key role in the case.

    The High Court in its order said,""It was shockingly mentioned that if the said advocate vacates the property, the Palanpur police would release him from jail in the said narcotics case. In fact, within only three days of Sumer Singh Rajpurohit remaining in police custody, the property was vacated by his brother, and on vacating the property, the Palanpur police filed a report under Section 169 CrPC saying that the person occupying the room at Lajwanti City Hotel where 1.5 kg narcotics was found was not Rajpurohit and that he may be released."

    Rajasthan Police said that Rajpurohit was abducted from his home and was booked in a fake narcotics case by Gujarat Police. However, the Palanpur police never probed the narcotics case.

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